Callis joins "17th Precinct" as part of larger trend

Posted by CB Droege

Two things we’ve been seeing a lot of lately: "Battlestar Galactica" actors being cast in new shows, and a prevalence of new crime procedural dramas, it was inevitable that it would happen simultaneously, but now it’s happened twice in one week.

A few days ago, I told you about the casting of Katee Sackhoff in the new crime drama based on the comicbook series, "Powers."

Today, we’ve got word that another “Battlestar Galactica” alum has been placed in another new crime drama. James Callis will be playing the role of a homicide detective in the new series, "17th Precinct." He joins that cast along another Battlestar Galactica alum, Jamie Bamber, who was announced last month.

Of course, this could just part of the bigger trend to place at least one "Battlestar Galacta" actor into every new sf/f series, as a way to draw audience share.

These actors have a certain appeal, and not for no reason.

"Battlestar Galactica" was one of the best, and most commercially successful hard sci-fi programs in a long time.

Partly, it was due to the mature look and feel to the gritty story, partly it was due to the incredible writing and compelling storyline. But it was just as much due to the talents of the cast.

However, even if the cast had not been all that great, we would still love them just for having been in that show. No other segment of the audience has this kind of actor loyalty.

When sitcoms, or day-time dramas, or even non-sci-fi crime procedurals are particularly successful, it may make the careers of the actors, but I can count on one hand the number of actors outside of sci-fi who got moved to another show, counting on their star power, and actually brought that power with them.

Usually it must also be another good show. Then again, sci-fi fans are willing to watch a show just because it has Amanda Tapping in it, even if everything else about the show is dumb (Yes, I’m talking about "Sanctuary").

Don’t get me wrong: I don’t have a problem with the trend. I mean: It worked on me. I’m much more excited to see "17th Precinct" knowing that Callis is part of the project, and after seeing him in other non-"Battlestar Galactica" projects, like "Eureka," I know he has the diversity of talent he’ll need to make the role interesting.